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Title: Altered expression of 5-HT1A receptors in adult rats induced by neonatal treatment with clomipramine
Author: Limon-Morales, O.
Soria-Fregozo, C.
Arteaga-Silva, M.
Vazquez-Palacios, G.
Bonilla-Jaime, H.
Issue Date: 2014
Abstract: Chronic administration of clomipramine (CMI) to neonatal rats produces behaviors that resemble a depressive state in adulthood. Dysfunctions in the activity of the central nervous system's serotonergic function are important in understanding the pathophysiology of depression. The serotonin system is implicated in major depression and suicide and is negatively regulated by somatodendritic 5-HT1A autoreceptors. Desensitization of 5-HT1A autoreceptors is implicated in the long latency of some antidepressant treatments. Alterations in 5-HT1A receptor levels are reported in depression and suicide. In this study, we analyzed the effect of neonatal administration of CMI on the activity of 5-HT1A receptors, both pre- and post-synaptically, by administering an agonist of 5-HT1A receptors, 8-OH-DPAT, and then subjecting the rats to the forced swimming test (FST) a common procedure used to detect signs of depression in rats. Also measured were levels of the mRNA expression of 5-HT1A receptors in the dorsal raphe (DR), the hypothalamus and the hippocampus. Wistar rats were injected twice daily with CMI at doses of 15mgkg-1 or saline as vehicle (CON) via s.c. from postnatal day 8 for 14days. At 3-4months of age, one set of rats from each group (CON, CMI) was evaluated for the effect of a selective agonist to the 5-HT1A receptor subtype, 8-OH-DPAT, by testing in the FST. Also determined was the participation of the pre- or post-synaptic 5-HT1A receptor in the antidepressant-like action of 8-OH-DPAT. This involved administering an inhibitor of tryptophan hydroxylase, parachlorophenylalanine (PCPA), and pretreatment with 8-OH-DPAT before the FST test and to evaluate the rectal temperature and locomotor activity. The expression of the mRNA of the 5-HT1A receptors was examined in the dorsal raphe nucleus, the hypothalamus and the hippocampus using the semi-quantitative RT-PCR method. The results from this study corroborate that neonatal treatment with clomipramine induces a pronounced immobility in the FST when animals reach adulthood, manifested by a significant decrease in swimming behavior, though counts of climbing behavior were not modified. This effect was similar in magnitude when 8-OH-DPAT was administered to CON group. Furthermore, the administration of 8-OH-DPAT induces a significant and similar increase in rectal temperature and locomotor activity in both the CON as in the CMI group. Neonatal treatment with CMI resulted in a significant decrease in the expression of the mRNA of the 5-HT1A receptors in the DR (% more than vehicle) in adulthood. In the case of the postsynaptic receptors located in the hypothalamus and hippocampus, neonatal treatment with CMI induced a significant increase in the mRNA expression of the 5-HT1A receptors. These data suggest that neonatal treatment with CMI induces a downregulation of the mRNA of the 5-HT1A autoreceptors in the DR, and an increment in the expression of the postsynaptic 5-HT1A receptors. The results after the administration of PCPA and 8-OH-DPAT on FST, rectal temperature and locomotor activity for both groups suggest that the function of postsynaptic receptors remains unchanged. All together these data show that the depressive behavior observed in adulthood in this animal model may be associated with long-term alterations in the expression of the mRNA of the 5-HT1A receptors. Zapotitlán 2013.
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